Subarachnoid hemorrhage admissions retrospectively identified using a prediction model

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To create an accurate prediction model using variables collected in widely available health administrative data records to identify hospitalizations for primary subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH).


A previously established complete cohort of consecutive primary SAH patients was combined with a random sample of control hospitalizations. Chi-square recursive partitioning was used to derive and internally validate a model to predict the probability that a patient had primary SAH (due to aneurysm or arteriovenous malformation) using health administrative data.


A total of 10,322 hospitalizations with 631 having primary SAH (6.1%) were included in the study (5,122 derivation, 5,200 validation). In the validation patients, our recursive partitioning algorithm had a sensitivity of 96.5% (95% confidence interval [CI] 93.9–98.0), a specificity of 99.8% (95% CI 99.6–99.9), and a positive likelihood ratio of 483 (95% CI 254–879). In this population, patients meeting criteria for the algorithm had a probability of 45% of truly having primary SAH.


Routinely collected health administrative data can be used to accurately identify hospitalized patients with a high probability of having a primary SAH. This algorithm may allow, upon validation, an easy and accurate method to create validated cohorts of primary SAH from either ruptured aneurysm or arteriovenous malformation.

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